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Differences in Proxy-Reported and Self-Reported Disability in the Demographic and Health Surveys
Authors: Mahmoud Elkasabi
Source: Journal of Survey Statistics and Methodology, Volume 9, Issue 2; DOI:
Topic(s): Data collection
Data quality
Country: Africa
  South Africa
Published: DEC 2020
Abstract: This article examines the presence, direction, and magnitude of differences between proxy reports and self-reports of disability among adults aged fifteen to fifty-nine years and elderly individuals aged sixty years and older in Demographic and Health Surveys conducted in Uganda, South Africa, and Mali. We use the propensity score weighted multivariate logistic regression to balance the weighted distributions of the covariates between self-reports and proxy reports. Disabilities that have an immediate effect on the communication with others or that require one-to-one help are likely to be over-reported by proxies or under-reported if proxies are not used, especially among the elderly aged sixty years and older. Disabilities that are not observable might be under-reported by proxies.